03 Mar This Little Light Of Mine
Here’s a short poem that I have penned. As you read it, maybe you can engage your imagination and picture yourself in it:
“I see a light ahead of me
Behind the misty veil
Lit against the weary sky
Lonely as I sailed
It glows and swells in between
Heaving rock and waves
But unmistakeable was it
Its glimmer bright as day
And as I try my best to see
Through the thrashing wind
In the mirrors of the seas
All along that light was me”
Unpacking the poem a little, it truly is a picture of our Christian journey. Sometimes it is filled with uncertainty and fear—just as how sailing a ship in a storm can be. We know that there are light and hope at the very end, and we strain towards it. Eventually, we discover that this light we see is actually the light that we are giving off, reflected in the waters around us.
For the longest time, I found it very hard to believe that I am a shining light. I know it in theory, but along the way—especially last year—I lost the fighting spirit and confidence in my identity. Yet, God says in Philippians 2:15 that we, as children of God, are like shining stars in the sky.
A month ago, Shinan and I started this one-year bible reading plan alongside with Jeremy and Eishen. Hence, we started reading Genesis 1, Matthew 1, Psalm 1… Matthew 1 records the genealogy of Jesus Christ. Who begot whom, and the list goes on for a while. Most of us only remember the key patriarchs: Abraham, David, and so on. Those men and women in between, whom we have forgotten, God remembered and honoured by having their names written down: those men and women were still used by God to fulfil His purposes. In fact, those men and women were very broken and sinful people. Rehab was a prostitute; David was an adulterer and murderer; etc.
In spite of that, they were still lights.
Like constellations in the sky, some of us are called to play a role in the foreground, like big stars, while some of us are called to play a role in the background, like smaller stars. Even so, every star is as important as the other, and every star is called to shine. Some of us have very different dreams and passions from one another, and we all have our individual callings. Be that as it may, they all should collide in the house of God. All of us play a part in the bigger picture, in building God’s Kingdom on earth. It’s only when two or more stars cross paths and collide, a supernova can come forth.
When I was young, I used to think that stars only exist at night because I could only see them at night. The truth is, they are always in the sky. They shine just as bright in the day as they do at night, but only in darkness do we appreciate them. Even when a star dies, there is an incredible explosion of light. However, unlike real stars, our light will never go out. We will never lose our precious salvation because God sustains us with His amazing grace. And in His grace, He has blessed us with free will: the choice to believe in Him or not. And if we say we believe in Jesus as our saviour and redeemer, then we need to take Him at His word. He says that truth is the light and truth will set us free. He calls us to live in this light in Ephesians 5:8-9: “For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.”
We were one full with darkness. Now we have light. Maybe we still have darkness in us, since we are still sinners. But now we have light!
And whatever darkness there is in our lives, God wants us to face it with courage. Some of you may not know this, but I experienced the darkest period of my Christian journey last year: I found myself in this pit of depression, not seeing a way out at all; believing at one point of time, that the darkness had consumed me. But God spoke to me through a passage in Exodus 20:18-21. Verse 21 reads, “So the people stood far off, while Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.” What Moses did was so counterintuitive! Yes, we are called to live according to the light. But… if you find yourself in the darkness, God is still there. And that deeply comforted me—to know that my God is truly with me wherever I go, even when I walk through the valleys of the shadows of death.
“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.” We are already standing on higher ground—on the hill that is our Lord. He is our firm foundation, and when we plant ourselves in God, we will light up the world. – Matthew 5:14